Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Standoff in Liberland

Inside ‘Liberland,’ the Place of No Taxes Where Crowdfunding Rules - Bloomberg Business - Ed Kiernan:

July 21, 2015 - "Liberland, or the Free Republic of Liberland to give it its full title, is a would-be sovereign state founded April 13 by Vit Jedlicka and two fellow libertarians. Its total area of approximately seven square kilometers would make it the third smallest sovereign state in the world, after the Vatican and Monaco.

"It's sandwiched between Croatia and Serbia on the western bank of the Danube River. On some maps, this area is referred to as “Gornja Siga'.... When the former Yugoslavia was split into new countries this small patch of land was forgotten about. Neither Croatia nor Serbia claimed it, making it a terra nullius or no man’s land.....

”According to the founders the objective is to build a country where honest people can prosper with minimal interference from a centralized government. 'We need more countries like Hong Kong, Singapore and Monaco, especially in Europe,' Jedlicka says. 'We really needed another tax heaven, not tax haven'.... All taxes will be voluntary, and the nation’s services - such as power, healthcare and waste disposal - will be run either by private enterprises or through crowdfunding campaigns....

"According to Jedlicka, Liberland has established embassies in several countries including the U.S., the U.K., France and the Czech Republic. He plans to open embassies in 'a hundred more countries by the end of the year.'

"Liberland is attempting to use the homestead principle, which states that unclaimed and undeveloped land can be legally claimed by any group willing to develop it. But some legal experts have stated that even though the land may appear unclaimed, it is most probably already part of Serbia....

"Croatian border police are arresting anyone who sets foot in Liberland. However, this has not deterred members of the Liberland Settlers Association, which attempts to reach it on a daily basis and often clashes with local police in the process.

"The Liberland Settlement Association (LSA) is an NGO based in Serbia, funded by the Liberland Settlement Corp. It is made up primarily of volunteers who attempt to maintain an active presence on Liberland to help it become a recognized country.... According to CEO Niklas Nikolassen, the Liberland Settlement Corp. (LSC) “is a group of liberty-minded investors who are funding the LSA.” The corporation, based in Switzerland, has a claim on 80,000 square meters of Liberland and is hoping that the actions of the LSA will help Liberland achieve recognition as a sovereign state and thus make the land valuable."

"Liberland has already received almost 400,000 applications for citizenship, however only around 45,000 of these are considered to be serious. According to Jedlicka there will probably be a total of 30,000-40,000 Liberlandians, not all of whom will actually live in Liberland."

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